Siegfried Fischbacher — of the animal training and magic duo Siegfried & Roy — has died at the age of 81 from pancreatic cancer.
His death comes just eight months after his performing partner Roy Horn died from complications related to Covid-19 at the age of 75.
— Dan Linden (@DanLinden) January 14, 2021
The German duo met as entertainers on a cruise ship in 1957 and began performing shows across Europe before traveling to Las Vegas in 1967. They quickly became one of the Strip’s most famous acts at revues like Hallelujah Hollywood and Lido de Paris before finding a permanent home at the Mirage hotel, formerly the largest hotel in Vegas, in 1989. They regularly sold out their nightly performances.
Over the course of their career, Siegfried & Roy would incorporate over 55 white lions, white tigers, leopards, jaguars, and an elephant into their stage shows. They ceased performing in 2003, when the white tiger Mantacore mauled Horn during a show and dragged him offstage, causing him to lose mobility in the left side of his body. (Horn later claimed that the tiger was only trying to help him after he had suffered a seizure onstage.) The pair continued to travel and appear at events before officially retiring in 2010.
In addition to their stage show, the duo also appeared in films like Vegas Vacation and the 2001 Ocean’s 11 remakes, as well as numerous TV specials centered around their Vegas career.